creativity, I curse thee

Classes in the craft center are not something I've indulged in lately. The choice of the word "indulged" is a perfect example of the issue at hand. Let me explain, I am in a creative funk. A creative funk I am in. In a creative funk am I. See?

I have a theory as to the whys and hows. It's pretty simple, pretty straightforward. And utter bullshit, I'm sure. But it's mine. Perhaps I should start with my fear rather than my theory. My fear is that, quite simply, the normal 9 to 5 working-world I live in will make me dumb. The struggle to sound reasonably intelligent on a consistent basis is pretty small. This is not because the people I work with are idiots, quite the contrary generally speaking, but rather the work environment prizes brevity and (what can only be described as) arena rock fist-pumping. Keeping with the arena rock metaphor, the salesmen all purchased front row tickets, upper management sit a tasteful distance from the stage to keep an eye on which way the wind is blowing, and all entry-level people fill in the space behind. I'm lucky, my work group firmly plants itself in the back row, unwilling to drink the kool-aid.* So at least I have that going for me. What's the point, you ask, dear reader? The point is, this isn't my last gig where I struggled to keep up intellectually. The struggle is good. It makes us better. I'm not trying to posit that I'm smarter than everyone I work with, merely that everyone I used to work with on a daily basis were WAY smarter than me. Way. Circling back around to the fear bit, I fear I am now dumber than I was because I no longer have the daily struggle.

My theory is that intense, sustained intellectual concentration and resultant (ahem, required) production of papers to explain your Buddha-like sitting position act as balm to one's creative thoughts. At least it did for me. You tell a story, give it suspense, evidence (!!), tease out the meaning, and hopefully don't put the reader to sleep. The part I loved about writing academic papers was making them not sound terribly academic.** Perhaps it's just the intellectual exhaustion I miss. What I'm getting at is that I had a creative outlet within my work. No such outlet exists for me now so I must go in search of it elsewhere.

For a while, this blog served as a creative outlet. I've built a kick-ass butcher block table which is functional and quite beautiful. I learned bike maintenance and various other things. But alas, I find myself in another creative funk. Creativity, I curse thee.*** Have no fear, I know what I need to do. Creativity is not something to "indulge" or pander to. It is something to chase after. This is just a rather long explanation of why my blog sucks. And my thoughts over the past couple months.


* I am in a creative funk, I'm more than allowed to mix my metaphors.
** Perhaps this is a good indicator of why I ventured out into the working world rather than continuing in higher education.
*** Not really. You know what I mean anyway.


boxfactoryboy said...

I think you are missing that face to face contact that can be hell, enlightening or validating. I think that is what I would miss in outstation working. In my life there were jobs with limited or no contact. That was a welcome, at times, respite from work interupted. That is missing in your work,that face to face. With your academic co-workers and acquaintances you could test your metal so to speak.
I dont think it is the same to fire off your "brilliant" ideas to the netherworld friends when you cannot see their reaction. Like "you're kidding me right?", or "makes sense". That raised eyebrow that says "what is she smoking"!
Perhaps the road to balance involves more of the going, doing, crafty, sporty interactions. I enjoy your blog and musings. Your funk and lack of interest in it is what has happened long ago to Mateo for example. While I myself dont think I could do it I do find your comment interesting, amusing and informative. So perk up, winter is over, almost, keep on truckin.

Anonymous said...

Wednesday nights...